Lunch Hour Closure - Small Municipalities

This questions is directed at municipalities under 10k in population with finance departments of 7 or less employees with 1 or 2 front counter cashiers/clerks.

I would like to know who closes their office during the noon-1:00 time period (excluding any Covid changes to hours) and how the noon closure impacts customers and staff - positives/negatives? Do you maintain phone coverage during the noon closure?



  • Hi Wayne
    We are a small muni and we close for lunch from noon-1:00 with no issues. We have an answering machine for calls that come in.

  • Hi Wayne
    We close for lunch between 12:30 and 1:30, with the exception of tax time. We have no complaints about this but we've been doing it for over a decade. Our answering service answers any calls during this time. During property tax time, we stagger the lunch breaks. As we only have two front counter staff, we keep the answering service on during lunch.

  • Our muni does staggered lunch hours 12-1 and 1-2 so we remain open.

  • Hi Wayne. We do not close for lunch hours, we just stagger staff to ensure that we always have two people in the office and one that knows how to process the cash receipting. I only have two finance staff in the office, they both share front counter duties and I will back them up. Our COVID policy does restrict the number of staff in the office at one time but we maintain constant customer service. Phones are always answered by a person and during the COVID we have been answering it 24/7.

  • Hi Wayne. We follow the same process as Tammy noted. Normally this applies to both our Town Hall services and our ICBC services (we are an Agent for ICBC). During the pandemic, we have implemented a lunchtime closure for ICBC services only (separate entrance) as we have only one staff member working at the counter. Calls go to voicemail which is handled by staff working remotely.

    Lorraine Coughlin
    Director of Finance
    Town of Gibsons

  • Hi Wayne, We close for lunch from 12-1pm with no issues.

  • We stagger lunch coverage and do not close.

    Dawn Christenson
    Town of View Royal
    [email protected]

  • Village of Hazelton with a pop. 300, 3 office staff. We close for lunch, no issues so far.

    Kelsey Green
    Deputy Finance Officer
    Village of Hazelton
    Email: [email protected] | Ph: 250.842.5991 | Fax: 250.842.5152

  • Thanks for the feedback, it appears that the small offices close and at certain size the decision is to stay open - probably due to having a few more staff for coverage. The City of Merritt (pre-Covid) stayed open during the lunch hour. During Covid, we are closed at lunch with limited hours (10-noon, 1-3). The public has been okay with the lunch hour close and there are benefits from a staffing perspective. My next step will be to review the transaction volumes from 12-1 as part of a business case to stay closed at lunch post-Covid. Our local Service BC and Front Counter BC offices are closed during lunch.

  • Town of Oliver does not close and staggers hours of employees.

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